Saturday, September 08, 2007

Fawlty Reasoning


So do you like my new avatar? It's supposed to represent the ushering of a new and improved Basil Fawlty. A more sophisticated version and I don't mean that in a 'I shall only wear blazers and drink champagne' sense. A more focused Fawlty, now with 20% less whining.

Who am I fooling? It's you. The Fawlty formula is world famous and practically patented: drink, drink some more, remember shit about yourself you hate which, under the normal rules of sobriety would be buried deep beneath layers of denial and hubris, and proceed to then flog yourself with it-in full view of the blogging community, mind you-until you pass out. Wake up the next day, read the shit you've written (I always remember writing it, hardly ever what it is I wrote) and wonder how you walk around with so much self-loathing and diffidence.

Did I ask if you liked my new avatar?

Things don't change; as much as they do, they don't. Let me be crystal clear: things change, but their speed of change is never enough to keep up with the falling of my spirit.

Couple that with the fact that I have ZERO confidence in myself, spells out one tortured little Fawlty. The irony-so-delicious-you-could-fry-it-with-butter is that my absence of confidence is what gives me my confidence: I'm certain I suck, ergo I have not much more to lose. Moreover, I'm certain I suck, but I'm more positive most people suck just as much as me, if not more. Finally, I suck but what sucks even more, is that I'm usually wrong about everything, even that.

Bleak stuff. And quite pathological.

So by my count, I lost half a dozen friends this year. I'm talking people I straight-up drove away because I'm difficult and inconsistent and complicated to deal with. I guess some of them were relationships, but most weren't. Friends are hard to deal with, because I can't figure out what they want.

What do you want, friends? What MORE do you want? I don't judge, I like to laugh, I don't hit on my friends (certainly not the guys but the girls are safe with me, as well) and I am never jealous or envious.

If all this sounds too good to be true, it might be. I've been accused of not giving a shit because of it. If you're not jealous or resentful or a little bit in love with your friends, then you must have some kind of agenda. You know, something really fucked up. Well, fuck it. Friends are too complicated; all I want from my friends is to be friendly without getting too close. Because deep down, I have nothing to offer. I'm emotionally bankrupt and I say this without a hint of self-pity.

Imagine that! A statement utterly devoid of self-pity in the midst of one gigantic blog dedicated to the indulgence of wallowing in self-pity.

This is just a fact that I can't seem to get away from. I'm too closed up for my feelings to leap all the way over to another person. I want someone, true, but I don't want even them to get too close.

Funny how the new Basil Fawlty isn't that different from the old. I think I may have a disease: I'm happy, during the day, but I have no joy.

Where do you people find your joy? And think about what you write before you post it; remember, I do this for a living, so if I see a cliche, a shred of disingenuousness, a quote from a book or a sentiment from whatever self-help manual you secretly have under your mattress...I'll assume that my own lack of originality has inspired yours.

Do you like my avatar? Stole it from a show called Mad Men, on AMC.

11 Comments:

Blogger ZeRoCoOl said...

I must say quite dapper Señor Fawlty....... It harkens back to a long gone era when men smoked their cancer with style and foie gras’ed their liver on single malt Scotch.

cool avatar

8:50 PM  
Anonymous Lynn said...

Don't know why for sure, but first thing I thought was you look so 'British' now. Bond..James Bond is what came to my mind.

As for where I get my joy? From reading other people whose lives are more messed up than mine.

No, I'm kidding. Let's see... joy? joy...JOY? What is joy? Joy isn't a constant thing. We have moments of joy at various times. If we had it constantly it would raise the bar and then you'd get depressed because you wouldn't recognize it as joy and you'd be complaining that you don't have any joy. I'm getting depressed now because I can barely think of any joyful times but then again, I have teenagers. You know, they should actually be called JOYsuckers! Now, there's something that you didn't realize you should be joyful about. You don't have teenagers!

But really, if you are happy why isn't that enough for you? Do you realize that there are people that can't even find a bit of happiness in their lives? You are very fortunate to have good friends that you can have good times with. I would think that you would find joy there.

"Friends are hard to deal with, because I can't figure out what they want" Really? Do they have to 'want' something other than to share a good time with you? I thought guys were simple with their friends? Are you talking about guy friends? The friends you describe sound like 'girl' friends and maybe they WANT you to hit on them? My husband has relationships with his 'guy' friends that are so very different from the kind of relationships I have with my 'girl' friends. Jealousy and envy are not things that come up at all in his relationships with his friends. Shoot they are so superficial that it makes me crazy. Best of friends but he never even asks him the important questions.

But, back to the point. Chill out about the frickin' joy! I think you are too busy whining about not having any that you are probably missing potential joyful moments.

12:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is a lot of obsessing with 'self' in your post. You will never find joy or even satisfaction this way. The 'self' is the source of all dissatisfaction! It is only by realising this and moving beyond it and disregarding your own grasping for happiness that it will come to you unsolicited in dribs and drabs, in time. Forget about it.

What brings me joy? Looking after my grandchildren (twin 3 year old boys-a lot of trouble at times), helping others who need help and would otherwise not receieve it and if possible doing so anonymously so that hubris doesn't become a condition of that help, making others laugh or smile and trying to correct injustices wherever I find them which is pretty much everywhere. And a lot of this doesn't make me popular either. Malesh, that's not the point. I'm far from perfect and sometimes make mistakes, but I ALWAYS try to apologise and set things right if possible when I have done so. To heal and not to hurt.

You don't need special skills to live this way ( although I have a few, they are not a condition. I know others who live this way, including Egyptians who have many skills and some who have none).

BTW I agree with Lynn...teenagers can be joysuckers...but they're not not the only ones...

If you treat your friends the way you ideally would like to be treated, you should have no problems. Have a generous heart, always give your friends the benfit of the doubt til you know for sure. I am occasionally disappointed in this way, but not often. Don't complicate things with your negative energies, keep it simple. You can make the choice it is up to you.

However, despite saying all this, I am beginning to worry you may need medical help. Have you considered it? The booze can certainly make all this self-obsessing-denigrating attitude worse.

4:30 AM  
Blogger ZeRoCoOl said...

Ok if you could only come out of the shadows.....with that self righteous holier than thou preachy comment.


Basil is a very articulate and introspective person far from self absorbed (albeit I've never met him.) But he always seems to impart nuggets of balance in his posts......................

My beloved anon.....Is that how a grandmother carries herself ????? by calling people names anonoumously on other peoples blogs

I like you mouse clicking diagnosis
DR ANON..it's very Gestalt..........

Sorry Basil I felt like putting my 1/2 cent in.....

BTW

5:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok zero,

I will desist as usual I am misunderstood...and you are not the first to call me self-righteous! My children have used this slur, but I notice they feel this way less and less as they mature and live life's hard lessons. This was not meant as a slur against Basil at all but if minds remain closed to change what can one do. I thought he was asking for help. I recognise his fine qualities which was why I even made the effort to help.

Just trying to open a new window. My mistake. I do apologise if not expressed well.

6:23 AM  
Blogger Basil Fawlty said...

Zerocool, you have to watch Mad Men! It's exactly how you describe it: all cigarettes, broads and scotch. You'd love it. It's on AMC.

Lynn: I don't know where I get this stuff and think, sometimes, you take me too seriously. I'm miserable, but then so is everybody else. The only reason it comes out as pathetically and desperately as it does is because of the a) drink and b) because it's my blog, I feel entitled to just pick at it, warts and all.

And speaking of guy friends, a vast majority of them have been acting very unguy-like lately and it's really pissing me off. Damn the newer sensitive models...why can't men be men and...not...spill their hearts out...on blogs...never mind:)

Anon: I don't have anything but mySELF to worry about or obsess over. Granted, this is all my own doing as I'm essentially a loner, but it's compounded by moving to a new country, not having my dog with me and being lonely. Your version of reality sounds appealing but it basically does me no good if it isn't mine or if I can't quire get there yet, you know?

That said, I appreciate your concern.

5:40 PM  
Anonymous Lynn said...

Basil,
Oh, I don't take you too seriously anymore. I know you are happy being miserable. Is your dog going to join you ever? I thought he was in a temporary home.

Are those unguy-like friends reading your posts by any chance? Do you talk to your friends like you do on your drunk posts? Do you get like that when you are out drinking? I'd quit drinking if it made me miserable. It does the opposite to me. It make me joyful but the people around me get miserable! LOL

Psst, if you want to find a good woman skip on over to Ireland. I have it on very good authority that they make VERY good ones there.

7:57 PM  
Blogger Forsoothsayer said...

um...i probably get y joy, if i have any, but not thinking too much about stuff. the unexamined life rocks.

8:18 AM  
Blogger Basil Fawlty said...

Yeah, well the unexamined life at 25, is almost a given, isn't it?

9:50 AM  
Blogger Forsoothsayer said...

nah my peers seem to examine theirs all the time. i'm just oblivious. perhaps dull.
also, am 24. bitches.

5:24 PM  
Blogger laura said...

I, too, analyze my life too much. Without trying, without really thinking about doing it, I do it. And it sucks. I know the feeling. And yes, moving to another country definitely does not help.
Friends. I've lost a few friends over the years. Not sure why. lack of contact? Leaving the country had a huge affect on that. Some friends I only see once every couple of years and don't really talk to much. I do still consider them friends. Some of the people I see more often I call friends but they aren't the ones I would go to if I really needed someone to talk to; more the drinking buddies or such. It's tough. It sucks. When they are all busy, I usually end up sitting here alone.
Well, recently I found a new friend (a new co-worker from London that has a lot of the same likes and dislikes) which has made a difference in the last month.
Find happiness in the simpler things; books, Internet, music, taking pictures, a great cup of coffee.
I can't give you advice. Who am I to tell you how to find happiness? Only you can do that.
nice avatar. I don't really see it matching the you that I read, but you did say it is the new and improved version of you. What you are striving to be?

7:54 AM  

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